Limestone is another natural stone which is commonly used for decorative purposes. This stone has a soft structure, which makes it really sensitive against scratches. The acidic substances, harsh cleaning agents, sharp edges and tools can easily damage the limestone made materials.
This rock has a gray color in general, but it is also available in other natural colors like white, yellow, light brown and dark brown. People usually prefer to use limestone in their homes to add the color and sense of nature to the rooms. In addition to that, most of the variations do not take the polish really well and the limestone surface is generally matte finish, which is frequently preferred by those who are in favor of no-gloss surfaces.
These are some of the advantages of limestone usage with decorative purposes. Yet, in this article we will deal with some of the problems that you might experience in limestone walls or surfaces. Before trying to get rid of the problems, you first need to identify what the problems are and what causes them.
4 Limestone Problems that You Might Come Across and How to Avoid Them
Limestone is a rock which is more prone to especially chemical weathering than other types of rocks such as granite. This is because calcium carbonate, which is one of the minerals found in limestone, readily reacts with rainwater. Rainwater can get acidic because of the carbonic acid that it contains. When it is exposed to carbonic acid frequently, you can see the marks of weathering on it. This is a common problem which is seen especially on the limestone walls which suffer substantial deterioration. You can avoid this problem by building a kind of a shelter above the limestone walls in order to protect them against rainwater. Or you might restore them if the weathering is on a deeper level.
This problem might be resulted from the general weathering that we describe above. Also, wrong handling or exposure might also lead to erosion on limestone. The airborne abrasives which are floated by wind are other reasons of erosion. Also, when this stone reacts with only water, the erosion might also occur. You can try to prevent erosion by planting the areas around the limestone-made walls, which can deflect the wind and water. Therefore you extend the life of the limestone.
This problem is also referred to as ‘discoloration of limestone’. Whether it is a general or localized staining, it is such an unwanted appearance on any decorative stone. Different types of organic and inorganic oils which limestone absorbs, wrong types of dyes and inks, organic matters such as leaves, animal droppings, flowers or tea and coffee, the metals like iron or copper which causes rust are the reasons of staining on the limestone. You should be careful about the paint and color that you choose for limestone surfaces. Cleaning agents should also be appropriate for limestone cleaning. For the organic matters such as animal droppings and leaves, you need to clean them as often as possible.
This is the most critical problem related to the limestone and limestone materials. This rock has already a brittle structure, which causes break-ups and dissolves. Inherent weakness in the stone itself or the gradual breakdown of the binder used for building it and the external factors are the main reasons which affect the durability and strength of the limestone and which finally cause crumbling. Once the damage is developed, there is not much to do to repair it. The only thing that you can do is to detect the potential problems in advance and eliminate the potential sources of crumbling.